Olean, Mudhens repeat as state amateur champs

Olean, Mudhens repeat as state amateur champs

The Miesville Mudhens, managed by St. Thomas coach Chris Olean, repeated as Minnesota State Baseball Association Class B champions on Labor Day with a doubleheader sweep of Chanhassen.


The Mudhens (37-4) won three elimination games on Sunday and Monday to win their seventh state title and third under Olean, who also managed and pitched for them in their 2007 and 2016 championship seasons.


Three other Tommies contributed to the title in Hamburg, Minnesota. They were assistant coaches Matt Van Der Bosch and Nate Hammes and former All-America pitcher Steve Maher '14. A fifth Mudhen with a St. Thomas connection, Charles Bruchu '12, did not play in the tournament.


Miesville went into the double-elimination tournament with a 21-game winning streak and won their first three games before losing to Chanhassen on Saturday. The Mudhens defeated Moorhead 6-3 on Sunday and then Chanhassen twice on Monday, 5-3 and 9-5, for the title.


"We had the same group of guys from last year, so it was fun to win it again," Olean said. "We had a long string of wins, so we knew we just had to play up to our capabilities. Losing that game to Chanhassen woke us up a little bit and the guys came back and played a lot better."


Olean pitched in four games as a late-inning reliever and had a win and two saves. The 1999 alumnus, an All-American pitcher for the Tommies in the late 1990s, picked up the win in the Moorhead game. He took the mound with one out and the bases loaded in the eighth and struck out two batters to keep the game tied, and won when the Mudhens scored three runs in the bottom of the inning. He also had saves in the Northfield game and the first Chanhassen win.


Hammes was tournament MVP after hitting safely in all seven games, with 15 hits in 27 at bats (.556) and seven RBI. Van Der Bosch had hits in five games. Maher was 2-1 in the tournament, beating St. Cloud and losing to Chanhassen on Saturday before pitching eight innings – and throwing 160 pitches – for the win over the Red Birds. Maher made the all-tournament team for the second year in a row.


A St. John's University pitcher also played a key role for the Mudhens. Jacob Dickmeyer, a junior, had two wins -- over Champlin and Northfield -- in three appearances.


With the amateur baseball season over, Olean will get back to business at St. Thomas this weekend. His Tommies, who last spring won their 14th regular-season MIAC title in 15 years, begin fall practice on Saturday.